HDMI ARC (Audio Return Channel) allows you to send audio from your TV back down an HDMI cable to a sound system or soundbar. This provides an easy one-cable connection for home theaters. But how can you tell if your television is equipped with HDMI ARC?
In this post we’ll cover the ways to identify HDMI ARC capability on any TV.
Check for an HDMI Port Labeled “ARC”
On modern TVs with HDMI ARC support, there will be a specific HDMI port labeled “ARC.” This dedicated port handles the two-way audio transmission. Simply plug your soundbar or receiver into this HDMI input to enable ARC connectivity.
Look for References to ARC in the Manual
If your TV manual references HDMI ARC, CEC, or linking audio to an external home theater, then ARC support is present. The manual should point out which port needs to be used. Older sets might refer to it as “HDMI Link” or “Bravia Sync” depending on the manufacturer.
Try Enabling ARC in the Settings Menus
Televisions with HDMI ARC usually require you to enable it in the settings/audio menu. There should be an option to allow audio output to an external speaker system using the ARC channel. Turn this setting on if available.
See If Your Remote Has a Specific ARC Button
Some TV remote controls have a dedicated button for HDMI ARC or HDMI control. Pressing this button toggles through enabling ARC output to a connected home theater system. If that button exists, your TV supports HDMI ARC.
Update to the Latest Firmware Version
Certain older HDTV models have received HDMI ARC support via firmware updates from the manufacturer. Check your current firmware version and compare it to the latest available. Updating may unlock HDMI ARC if it was absent originally.
Does Your Soundbar Automatically Link?
When you connect a soundbar or A/V receiver to the correct HDMI ARC port, it should automatically link with the TV audio. If you get sound immediately without manual setup, then HDMI ARC is present and working.
As you can see, HDMI ARC capability is straightforward to identify on modern televisions. Just use the dedicated ARC port, enable ARC output, and simplify your home theater connections.